Venlo trucking company accused of exploiting foreign drivers

Photo: Depositphotos.comDutch and Belgian trade unions FNV and BTB are accusing Venlo trucking company Martin Wismans of forcing drivers to to commit fraud in their logbooks and to work longer hours than they should by law, the Financieele Dagblad said on Thursday.

‘This time [the accusations] involve French drivers not Filipino or Romanian drivers as in the past,’ says John Reynaert of the Belgian transport union BTB, told the paper.

Wismans has been accused of exploitation many times in the past. Last summer the FNV accused the company of exploiting 25 Filipino drivers who were employed by Wismans’ letterbox companies registered in Slovakia.

The FNV’s Edwin Atema said it was still investigating the case in which Filipinos slept for weeks in the drivers’ cabins, had no breaks and were paid a net salary of €690 a month.

‘Earlier this month we rescued two Romanians from a parking lot near Liege,’ Reynaert adds. The drivers had decided to stop work because Wismans had refused to pay their salaries, totalling €3,000 in addition to some traffic fines.

More complaints

A report on this incident, relayed by the Romanian drivers, appeared on BNB’s French-language Facebook page and generated further complaints, this time from French truck drivers employed by Wismans.

Union officials are to meet those drivers at the weekend to discuss their complaints.

The FD says government inspectors are investigating the company. Wismans refused to comment.

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